Programs such as the following play critical roles in achieving council’s conservation and education goals.
Coldwater Heritage Partnership
Rachel Kester – CHP Program Director 814-359-5233
The Coldwater Heritage Partnership (CHP) provides leadership, coordination, technical assistance, and funding support for the evaluation, conservation and protection of Pennsylvania’s coldwater streams. For more information on the Coldwater Heritage Partnership, see: https://www.coldwaterheritage.org/
Trout in the Classroom
Rachel Kester, Program Coordinator 814-359-5233
Trout In the Classroom (TIC) is an environmental education program in which students learn about coldwater conservation while raising trout from eggs to fingerlings in a classroom aquarium. During the year each teacher tailors the program to fit his or her curriculum needs. Therefore, each program is unique. For more information on Trout in the Classroom, see: https://www.patroutintheclassroom.org/
Forever Wild Grants
Rachel Kester, Program Director 814-359-5233
The Forever Wild grant fund which is funded in part through the sale of “Back the Brookie” license plates awards mini-grants of up to $2,500 directly to chapters to complete projects and programs that relate to the protection and restoration of Pennsylvania’s wild trout species and which further the objective of education and outreach to communities within the Commonwealth about the importance of our coldwater resources and their conservation. Grant applications are accepted on a rolling basis until funds are expended for the fiscal year. Depending on funding availability, Council expects to award between $10,000 to $15,000 annually to chapters through the Forever Wild program. Go to Forever Wild Grant App for more information and to download an application form. Click here to purchase a plate.
PATU Veterans Service Partnership
The PATU Veterans Service Partnership is a family fishing program for veterans conducted by the Pennsylvania Trout Unlimited chapters in our local communities and waters. Whether you are a veteran, family member or streamside mentor, the VSP Program is open to all without charge. Go to our Facebook page or contact Keith Angstadt at [email protected] for more information.
Click here for more information and resources.
Keystone 10 Million Trees Partnership
We are excited to announce the Keystone 10 Million Trees Partnership. PA Trout has joined forces with 135 other partner organizations, and together we will plant 10 million—that’s right, 10 MILLION—trees in Pennsylvania by the end of 2025.
Click here for more information.
Eastern Brook Trout Habitat Initiative
Amy Wolfe- TU NE Coldwater Habitat Program Director 570-748-4901
Throughout Pennsylvania, native brook trout are at risk. Pressures from poor land management, natural resource development and other problems have reduced the number of fish and fishing opportunities throughout the state.
TU is embarking on a new project, working to restore brook trout habitat in several important watersheds in Pennsylvania, by reconnecting rivers and streams, repairing and replacing culverts where fish can’t swim through and will, overall, increase places for fish to live.
Keystone Coldwater Conference
The Keystone Coldwater Conference is a biennial conference that promotes the sharing of ideas between diverse groups with common interests and causes to protect, conserve and restore Pennsylvania’s coldwater resources. The audience is primarily grassroots organizations, watershed and sportsmen’s groups, and other environmentally active citizens, including college students and professionals from conservation districts, agencies and consulting firms.
Eastern Abandoned Mine Program
Amy Wolfe – TU NE Coldwater Habitat Program Director 570-748-4901
Trout Unlimited’s Eastern Abandoned Mine Program (EAMP) is focused on the conservation, protection, and restoration of coldwater fisheries and their watersheds that have been impacted by historic coal mining throughout the Appalachian region. With more than 8,000 stream miles polluted from abandoned mine drainage (AMD) just between Pennsylvania and West Virginia alone, AMD is cited by the Environmental Protection Agency as the single largest threat to the Appalachian environment. The main focus for Trout Unlimited’s Eastern Abandoned Mine Program is the West Branch Susquehanna Restoration Initiative (WBSRI), which is a comprehensive and collaborative effort aimed at the restoration of coldwater streams and the ultimate recovery of the West Branch Susquehanna River.
Web Site: https://www.tu.org/tu-projects/eastern-abandoned-mines-program
Dirt and Gravel Roads Program
Created in 2001, the Center for Dirt and Gravel Road Studies is contracted by the PA State Conservation Commission (SCC) to provide services to PA’s Dirt and Gravel Road Maintenance Program. The center’s efforts on this front include: Web Site: http://www.dirtandgravelroads.org/
TU Headwaters Youth Program
The Headwaters Youth Program is TU’s nationwide initiative to introduce youth to coldwater conservation through angling. The program is the result of a ground-breaking partnership between TU and the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation (RBFF), working on the premise that many of our most dedicated conservationists are also avid anglers.
Web Site: http://www.tu.org/conservation/outreach-education/first-cast-program
PATU Rivers Conservation and Fly Fishing Youth Camp
Clark Hall 717-697-4549
The award winning camp continues to emphasize improving our cold water resources by addressing environmental issues as well as teaching fly fishing techniques. The lessons and memories from camp will last a lifetime and will encourage students to become active immediately as well as grow into leaders of the future.
Web Site: http://www.riverscamp.com
Keystone/TU Teens Conservation Summer Camp
Charlie Charlesworth 570-954-5042
Keystone/TU Teens Conservation Summer Camp is a collaborative effort between Keystone College and several northeastern PA chapters of Trout Unlimited that instructs teens in the art of fly fishing, while at the same time learning about conservation and the environmental sciences involved in the protection and enhancement of coldwater environments.
STREAM Girls / STREAM Keepers
STREAM Girls is Trout Unlimited’s STEM program for girls. These watershed experiences employ STEM-education (science, technology, engineering, math) plus recreation and arts to explore a local stream.
Every person is a citizen of her watershed, and Trout Unlimited has partnered with Girl Scouts USA to show what that means to us. By visiting a local stream and having the opportunity to observe it as scientists, anglers, and artists, girls will get the complete picture of what their stream could mean to them.
Over the course of multiple sessions, Trout Unlimited volunteers lead the Girl Scouts in observing a stream, collecting flow data, sampling macroinvertebrates (aka aquatic bugs), fly tying, and fly casting. Each day also gives the girls time to explore the natural area and record their thoughts and observations in their handbooks.
Based on the success of the STREAM Girls program, and wanting to expand it to a broader audience, the STREAM Keepers program has been developed. STREAM Keepers is a gender-neutral youth program that closely follows the lesson plans of STREAM Girls, but can be adjusted to fit an abbreviated schedule while still guiding students through the basics of stream conservation and recreational fishing. For more information on either program, please contact PATU Youth Education Coordinator, Judi Sittler, at [email protected].
PATU College Outreach Program / 5 Rivers Program
This initiative is designed to involve local chapters in attracting and recruiting younger TU members to become actively involved with TU activities. The basis for this program is the development of contact lists with both student and faculty groups at local colleges. Guidelines for developing a plan tailored to a specific college are available from Charlesworth at 570-954-5042 or [email protected].
The TU 5 Rivers program organizes campus clubs that teach students fly casting and fly tying and also provide volunteer stream conservation activities on the members’ home waters. Students in TU 5 Rivers Clubs have the chance to join a sponsoring TU Chapter in their region, lend a young voice, and help shape the TU of tomorrow.
Youth memberships are available online at www.tu.org/join for Stream Explorers (age 12 & under) for $12, and for TU Teens (age 13+) for $14 annually. Bulk membership rates of $8 per youth are also available for chapters who wish to sign up 6 or more youths at a time. Contact Tara Granke at [email protected] to obtain a group signup sheet.